Holocaust Remembrance Day: The City of Oak Ridge has proclaimed May 5 to be Holocaust Remembrance Day for 2019.
The Jewish Congregation of Oak Ridge (JCOR) and the Oak Ridge Unitarian Universalist Church (ORUUC) have partnered together to present the annual Holocaust Remembrance Program, a press release said. It will be held from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. in the JCOR Sanctuary, 101 West Madison Lane in Oak Ridge, on May 5. There will be a candle lighting ceremony, songs, readings, and prayers. The Holocaust Remembrance Service is sponsored by the Oak Ridge Interfaith Partnership, and the public is encouraged to attend, the press release said.
Mira Kimmelman, a local Holocaust survivor who passed away on April 17 of this year, initiated the Holocaust Remembrance Service many years ago, the press release said. Mira is the author of “Echoes From the Holocaust: A Memoir” (1997) and “Life beyond the Holocaust: Memories & Realities” (2005). She spent many years lecturing to various community groups and classes.
“It is now up to the rest of us to carry Mira’s legacy and educate ourselves and the community about the Holocaust, so that it never happens again,” the press release said.
An Interfaith Holocaust Study Group is held each year in the weeks prior to the Holocaust Remembrance Service. The group is led by Julie Kinder-McMillan and Steve Reddick, both teachers from the Oak Ridge School system. The class is designed to explore the events leading up to and including the Holocaust, as well as the role of the church, the psychology and propaganda machinery, and our own self-reflection in the face of hate, the press release said. Tools include lectures, outside readings, and survivor videos to create a meaningful dialogue for change.
The Holocaust Remembrance Program honors the six million Jews lost in the Holocaust and serves as a reminder of the impact of hatred. It is part of a commitment to carry on the mission to educate about the Holocaust so that it will not be forgotten. That means looking back on the events in Germany in the 1930s and 1940s, and facing today’s increase in hatred and antisemitism.
The Oak Ridge Chapter of the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs will have yellow memorial candles for attendees to pick up after the service. The candle can be lighted in memory of the six million Jews who perished in the Holocaust. The candle is modeled after a traditional Jewish memorial Yahrzeit candle that burns for 24 hours during periods of mourning and on the anniversary of death.
“We remember this difficult time in history, empowering us to speak out and commit to changing the direction for future generations,” the press release said.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
This press release and photo were submitted by Rhonda Bogard.
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